Five Questions for the Family Liaison

CONNECTING WITH FAMILIES. As a family liaison, it is Debbie Moore's job to be a bridge between the school and its families.

Meredith Mooney

CONNECTING WITH FAMILIES. As a family liaison, it is Debbie Moore's job to be a bridge between the school and its families.

Cassie Probst, Staff Writer

Deborah Moore is the Family Liaison for Sevier Middle School. An important part of her position as Family Liaison is the opportunity to support Sevier families as they navigate their educational experience.

“In my past positions, I spent a lot of time working with families in the mental health field,” Moore said. “However, this position allows me to have lots more direct time with both students and families in a totally different way.”

It is important for families to know about school events, tutoring, and where to find resources for their families. For some, Moore is the link to the school needed to learn more about these things.

“Another important piece is creating Family Engagement events, in which families can become involved with their child’s school in a positive way,” Moore said. “Sometimes, a family has had a negative school experience that has left our families with feelings of being unwelcome. It is my goal to replace the negative memory with a positive experience.”

Moore starts her day with car duty, but after that, the day can go in a million different directions. Her position is “Title 1” based and that requires a lot of detailed work. She has lots of paperwork and meetings.

“If a student has been referred with a disability that substantially affects their academics, I will facilitate a 504 meeting for the family,” Moore said. “Also, I work with families on reducing barriers to their child’s school success. I work with teachers and families on finding resources that are necessary for the family and student to be successful.”

Moore is involved with a recent initiative with the United Way called “Grand Parenting Network” for grandparents raising their grandchildren.

“My favorite part is supporting our students on an individual basis,” Moore said. “Sometimes, having lunch with a student is the best part of the day. I am excited to be a Family Liaison with the school system.”

This school year, Moore has made a special effort to increase family engagement. There have been many successful events already this year including the Open House, grandparents sessions, Lunch with a Warrior, and Paint with Pastries night.

“This year, we had a very successful grandparents session,” Moore said. “This was an opportunity for grandparents to visit the school and learn more about middle school.”

This isn’t the end, though, since Moore is working hard to make events like the Family Stem Night fun and engaging.

“Our next big event is our Family Stem night,” Moore said. “All of our families are invited to come and interact and explore our Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math stations. We will be offering door prizes and tasty refreshments.”

Moore’s position is particularly important for Sevier Middle School because involving parents can improve academic performance, and have a positive influence on student attitude and behavior.

“Studies show that students who have families who are involved and supportive of their child’s education have greater successes in school,” Moore said. “This level of involvement can look different for each family. It may be the family is engaged by committing to having their child to school every day, reading with their child, or keeping track of their child’s grades. For others, it may be that they volunteer or attend school events.”

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